DURHAM, N.C. -- One of Dylan Owen's strongest starting pitching performances was wasted Monday night as the Durham Bulls handed the Buffalo Bisons a 2-1 loss before 4,622 at Durham Bulls Athletic Park in the opener of a four-game series.
Owen (2-4) allowed six hits in six innings, but one was a two-run homer by Desmond Jennings in the third inning.
That was all the margin Durham right-hander Chris Bootcheck (3-1) and two relievers needed.
The only Bisons run came on a solo homer by Zach Lutz with two out in the sixth inning.
Buffalo reached the halfway point of the 144-game International League regular season with a 29-43 record. That's eight games behind the Herd's 2010 pace. Buffalo was two games over .500 (37-35) at the midpoint a year ago.
Lutz's homer was his second of the season and first since April 12. Lutz was on the disabled list for 44 games from April 19 to June 7 because of a hamstring strain and an injured finger.
Otherwise the Herd was unable to cash in. Bootcheck and relievers Dane De La Rosa and Jake McGee did not walk a batter. Buffalo had nine hits but left seven on base and was 1 for 5 with runners in scoring position. They lost another runner when Luis Figueroa was caught attempting to steal home in the first inning.
Michael Fisher of the Bisons extended his hit streak to 14 games when he reached on a bunt single in the first inning. Nick Evans singled in the fifth, extending his hit streak to 10 games.
Right-hander Chris Schwinden of the Bisons (3-3, 3.19) is scheduled to oppose Bulls righty Lance Cormier (0-0, 1.59) tonight (7:05 p.m., Radio 1520 AM).